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10 Minute Meal – Pan Fried Gnocchi with Chicken Meatballs and Pea Puree

This post is primarily about a super quick carb side and the whole dish is a compilation of items rather than a recipe but I’m aiming to give inspiration for an alternative use for gnocchi and a way to use up my freezer stash of Garlic Pea Puree – A prep ahead side. Its also a ‘get home from work and want to eat quickly without resorting to a bacon and egg sandwich’ type meal.

The chicken meatballs I used are from Ikea, I’m not a great purveyor of convenience foods but these are tasty, gluten free and microwaveable in 4 to 5 minutes from frozen so I like to try and pick up a bag when I go to Ikea – there are 6-8 portions or so in a bag so they work out a quite cheap meal too.

Onto the gnocchi and I guess that this is essentially another convenience food I do use fairly regularly too. If you’re not familiar, they are little Italian potato dumplings which are generally found with the pasta in the supermarket and boiled for a few minutes and then used like pasta in a sauce. I generally buy the fresh gnocchi from the supermarket and it keeps fine in the fridge for ages unopened and several weeks open – ignore the use-by dates, they’re hokum and you’ll know when they’re not useable anymore using your nose and eyes. I use these as a side for all sorts of things, they’re appropriate anywhere you’d serve boiled potatoes etc. Cooked this way they’re a little crispy on the outside and fluffy inside.

Serves 1 – 665 Kcal

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Ingredients:

1 Portion Garlic Pea Puree – A prep ahead side
9 (150g) Ikea Chicken Meatballs
1/4 Bag (125g) Fresh Gnocchi
1 tbsp Reduced Fat Crème Fraiche
Sea Salt Flakes
Frylight Spray


Start by emptying the pea puree into a small plastic bowl and popping it in the microwave on full heat for 4 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a small frying pan and add 10 sprays of Frylight. When quite warm, add 1/4 Bag (125g) Fresh Gnocchi  to the pan and shake the pan to coat the gnocchi in some of the oil.

Leave the pan for a minute before shaking again to turn the gnocchi over. There should now be little golden crispy bits formed.

Leave the pan alone for another minute then add 4-5 tbsp water to the pan.

Tip – You can just continue to dry fry the gnocchi but I find it’s quicker to use a bit of water and I think it makes the finished texture a bit fluffier.

Stir the gnocchi around the water a little and leave until the water has evaporated giving it the occasional shake.

By this time the pea puree should be heated through so pop 9 (150g) Ikea Chicken Meatballs into the microwave for 4-5 minutes on full heat in another small plastic bowl.

Returning to the gnocchi, when all of the water has gone and the pan is dry again, stir in 1 tbsp Reduced Fat Crème Fraiche and Sea Salt Flakes to taste.

Tip – Don’t be put off by the slight skin that will have formed on the bottom of the pan, this is just the starch from the gnocchi and it’ll stir in with the crème fraiche and add a little bit of crispy texture.

Serve the gnocchi with the warm pea puree and the chicken meatballs.

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